“When’s the last time you did something for the first time?”
There is one thing that was always consistent in my life when growing up; comfortness. I lived the basic American dream for 22 years of my life. Raised by two loving parents, in a more than amazing home environment, I was taught many valuable lessons and skills that have developed me into the woman I am today.
I grew up eating, sleeping and breathing basketball, all the way up until I graduated from college. My second home was a gym. School and basketball were all I really knew, and this was a routine I grew to love, and it taught me some of the most important lessons, gave me some of the best of friends and amazing memories of my life.
However, for over 21 years, I was stuck inside a comfort zone.
And then I was in Asia.
It’s been over 2 years now since I moved to Asia. And moving here has completely changed and saved my life. Looking back at where I was two years ago, is incredible. There came a crossroad in my life when I had the opportunity to finally make decisions for myself, on my own terms. I decided to create a dream into a reality, and it has forever changed me.
Becoming an ESL teacher has given me the world literally right in the palm of my hands. It has allowed me to frolic around the world with nothing but a backpack, and an open mind to see new places and faces. It has allowed me to swim with sharks in the Philippines, go zip-lining over islands in El-Nido, attend a Buddhist celebration in a Burmese village, hike an active volcano at 2am in Bali, spend a day with an elephant in Thailand, and see some of the most breathtaking and bone-chilling locations in the world. When I am not singing the ABC’s to a group of 5 year old, or cleaning up spilled paint, or giving high-fives and piggy-back rides, I am on the next bus, train, plane, taxi, van or motorbike that is going to allow me to explore the world. Travel is what makes me feel most alive. It fills me up with joy, excitement and curiosity. It humbles me. It allows me to be pushed to my limit, it provokes new thoughts and questions into my mind, it challenges me every second of everyday, and teaches me something new constantly.
Globetrotting Jessie wasn’t made so I could list off all the places I have been, or tell you all the “how to’s” if you travel to Thailand. It’s main purpose was to allow those back home to have a taste of my life here, seen through my eyes and written in my own words. The main purpose is to help others imagine what life is like on this side of the world. I try my best to show you my reality through the people I meet, the places I go, the things I see, the ridiculous situations I get myself into, and the work I am doing. From humorous and fun, to sarcastic and emotional, to inspirational and real, I aim to capture the reality of being a foreign teacher in a new place, the taste and life from each country I travel, as well as the positive impact I am trying to leave on those around me.
For those who have read my blog, thank you. For the encouragement, and constant support, thank you. I hope that my stories will strive to entertain, inform and inspire those around me. Globetrotting Jessie will continue on no matter where the wind may blow me after my time here in Taiwan. I will relentlessly continue to chase after what I want, and continue to create my dreams into a reality. Where will those dreams take me? Who knows…. You’ll have to keep reading to find out.